What attack on Syria will mean

By Joseph Farah

If Barack Obama leads America into a war with Syria, there’s something everyone needs to know about this mission that hardly anyone is articulating.

This war will not just be with a Syrian regime clinging tenuously to power. It will be a proxy war against Iran.

If it were not for support from Iran, Bashar Assad would probably be out of power already. It would not even be an exaggeration to suggest Syria has become a client state of Iran, as has neighbor Lebanon. Think of Hezbollah as Iran’s terrorist foreign legion. It maybe represent the most significant military power in Syria and Lebanon.

Last week, Iranian officials said if the U.S. launches missile attacks on Assad’s forces (meaning their own), Tehran would respond with missile attacks of its own – on Israel.

This may be a bluff, but it may not be.

I don’t think that comes as a surprise to U.S. war strategists – not at all.

Let me explain the real war behind the war.

You don’t think Obama is losing sleep over a relative handful of victims of a chemical weapons attack in Syria, do you? There are far more children aborted through equally gruesome means every single day in America than were killed by chemical weapons in Syria. And, despite assertions by administration officials, there is no compelling evidence the attacks were conducted by the Syrian regime.

I think what Obama is doing in Syria is part of a devious, one might even say diabolical, master plan for dealing with Iran and its nuclear weapons program.

Iran is likely to react very strongly to any missile attack on Syria, which it now considers virtually its own sovereign territory. It is likely the blowback will come in two forms – missiles and terrorist attacks. Hezbollah has lots of missiles that can target Israel from Lebanon and Syria. It also commands terrorist cells all over the world that can hit American interests.

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When missiles start raining on Israel, what do you suppose the Jewish state’s reaction will be? Israel is not going to sit this war out as it did during the Persian Gulf War, when Saddam Hussein fired every Scud missile he had at Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Israel. Israel is going to fire back. It may even be the provocation Israel needs to attack Iran’s nuclear facilities – with tacit U.S. approval.

Now don’t get me wrong. I support Israel’s right to defend itself 100 percent. But Americans need to understand what kind of war Obama is leading us into – one that probably cannot be contained to Syria. And I suspect the principal motivation for the Obama regime is its own fealty, not to Israel, of course, but to Saudi Arabia, which wants Iran put in its place.

This is much more complicated than Americans are being told. It’s not about American national security interests. It’s not about American compassion for victims of chemical weapons attacks. It’s not about a ruthless tyrant killing his own people in Syria. It’s about the national security interests of the rich and powerful elite in Saudi Arabia.

To illustrate what I am talking about, I want to take you back to an interview with born-again hawk Chuck Hagel in March 2012, more than a year before he became Obama’s defense secretary.

Here’s what he candidly told Al-Monitor about the possibility of the U.S. getting militarily involved in Syria back then: “We cannot be the tip of the spear under any circumstances. This is not Libya and even Libya was a coalition. … If there is some military intervention, it has to come from the region. The Arab League … I don’t think it can be a NATO-led element.”

You will notice that the Arab League is pointing fingers at the Assad regime, but that’s all. It has no plans whatsoever to be part of a coalition with the U.S. in an attack on Syria – not even symbolically.

Hagel’s new enthusiasm for an attack on Syria without Arab forces seems to show he has not only abandoned his historical reluctance to commit the U.S. military to war in the Middle East, it also suggests he no longer minds going it alone.

What’s that all about? Well, Hagel is not just Obama’s defense secretary. He’s bought and paid for with Saudi oil money, as is his boss in the White House. You could even go so far as to say the U.S. will once again serve as Saudi Arabia’s proxy army, as it did in two wars in Iraq.

There’s something else in that Hagel interview in 2012 worth noting.

About the possibility of a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities, he said: “You cannot push the Iranians into a corner where they can’t get out. … You’ve got to find some quiet ways – and you don’t do this in the press or by giving speeches – to give them a couple of facing-saving ways out of this thing so they get something out of this, too.”

That’s another principle Hagel seems to have forgotten since joining the Obama administration.

Suddenly, the peaceniks of yesteryear, Obama and Hagel – who denounced with such righteous indignation George W. Bush’s war in Iraq – find themselves preparing for a Mideast war of their own.

And this one could be a lot messier for the U.S., for Israel and the entire region.

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